The myth of the neutral school

Parents, government and teachers expect schools to show neutrality in how they educate young people, but Clare Jarmy questions whether that is truly possible – or even desirable

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I was discussing responsibilities to others with my Year 13 ethics class and we began a debate around what you should do if the person ahead of you at a cashpoint left their money behind and began to walk off down the street.

One student, a high-achiever aiming for top grades, was certain of the right response.

“I’d keep it,” they said. “If they’re such an idiot, I deserve the money.”

It was a shock. I had taught this young person ethics for nearly two years, they excelled in the subject, yet they had clearly failed to become more ethical as a result.

Part of me felt I had still done a good ...

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